Monday, May 2, 2011

Joining a Quilt Guild

 A guild is nothing more than a group of men and women, young and old who come together to share their love of quilting at all levels but I didn't know that in the beginning. I was afraid of the commitment and not knowing what to expect. So when I started asking a friend of mine questions about quilting she told me I ought to come to a quilt guild with her. I thought no way those people will intimidate me and I haven't a clue how to quilt. (To be honest I still don't have a clue but don't tell anyone)  My friend Denise assured me that it was okay.  A guild is what you make it, be it a social thing, a community thing, education, or a way of gathering inspiration. I broke down and joined a guild in 2003 but I never was able to figure out where I fit in, plus the fact it was approximately 25 miles from the house so I wasn't getting home until 10:30pm or later. During the year I was a member I never really got involved, my error.  But in 2007 I tried a different guild I had heard about and it was much closer to home and after 2 visits I felt comfy. Even if I had to just sit in the crowd by myself.  Tri County Quilt Guild  has this Motto: "We're one of the friendliest guilds around"  so guess what I didn't have to sit alone.

Now these men and women tend put me to shame by a long shot but that's okay I'm watching, learning and by all means admiring. There's this one member who's around 90 something and she hand pieces and hand quilts her quilts. Her quilts are intricate and oh so beautiful!

To be honest I don't consider myself a quilter, I'm more of a FABRIC JUNKIE. I have plenty of fabric tucked away in a closet or two and in my custom fit cabinets for the dormer windows. The fabric stash far out does the book closet I talked about in an earlier blog.               
I plan on making a sign to put on the main closet stash that will say:  

"Fabricologist  Resource Center"   ... sounds more impressive than "fabric stash don't you think?
It used to be neater but I've been digging. I'll go back and restore order one day soon just so I can destroy again. I have more in other hiding spaces but the rest of the year my goal to use some of this stash up.

I'm only semi creative but I'm very messy. This was scary showing you a couple of stashes.
The best way to really meet members up close and personal at any guild is by getting involved. Join a Bee, volunteer to help a chair person or better yet be a chair person, or take classes that are offered.  I've managed to do a little of it all. 
Everyone has a reason for joining a guild and mine was purely selfish because I wanted to be surrounded by talented and creative people with quilting knowledge. I've found I'm very insecure in my ability to be creative. Practice Practice Practice.
Our program chair Nina did the coolest thing recently.... She put on a program where instead of a guest speaker, we as members could sign up to show a problem quilt or block and ask the entire guild membership for ideas on how to arrange the blocks, how sash or just how to complete. We can all use a fresh set of eyes or the guidance of another experienced quilter. Sometimes even the inexperienced have a fresh idea or two to share.

The card I passed out at quilt shops
The guild had a chair position open and after being a member for maybe 3 months I got stupid I mean brave and volunteered for the Publicity Chair Person. I had the really hard job of going to the quilt shops (oh darn I really hated going to the shops, NOT), introduce myself on behalf of the guild and ask if I can leave post cards about our guild for customers to pick up.
 Of course while there I would ask if they'd like to donate a door prize item  and get a free plug for their  shop and I'd ask if they'd like to advertise in the guild newsletter and website for a low yearly price.
Now at first the idea of me going in asking for a door prize or asking about advertising was very scary but after a while it got easier and fun. 
Of course I couldn't ask for a handout without buying something, could I?  Of  Course NOT. I usually walked out with at least a Fat Quarter or two or three or ... well you get the idea ;o). Now for you none quilters I'm not talking body parts okay. A fat quarter is 18"x22" cut of fabric. 
There's this saying amongst quilters that "the one who dies with the biggest stash wins". I have entered Fabric-aholic's Anonymous and I'm on a 12 step program but I've been so busy buying fabric so I haven't attended a meeting to know what the 12 steps are. hmmmm
 
In 2009 I lost my mind and volunteered to be the co-vendor chair for the Quilt Guild's first Quilt show in February 2010. I had to find vendors and rent them a booth at our show.  Now when I go to other Guild Quilt Shows the vendors recognize me which is fun. 
2008 June
A Stack n Whack quilt
 I entered a quilt in our 2010 show in the non-Judged section.. My first attempt at freestyle quilting.  
Joining the guild was the best thing for me. It gives me plenty of talented quilters to ask questions of and find inspiration. Then of course finding inspiration is the easy part in this guild but the idea of me implementing and completing what I start is another thing. 

We have our 2nd Quilt show coming up 2010 on March 2 &3. I volunteered at first but when I learned of the dates I had to resign before I even got started because of other obligations. But that's not to say I won't be involved when the show gets here.

At one of the meetings I noticed that the President was trying to jockey several jobs and was beginning to look like Gumby being pulled in so many directions. So I asked if she'd like me to take pictures to relieve her of at least one small task. She didn't seem to hesitate now that I think about. hmmm... so I now take pictures at the meetings, at some of the bees and workshops whenever I can. Photography will be my one contribution to the 2012 Quilt show. Diane probably takes better pictures but I do my best and I love doing it.
Funny thing, Quilters are no different than most, they don't always like their picture taken. I just don't understand they're all beautiful right? Hence I get threatened, glared at and I get these funny hand signs. LOL.     (Doesn't stop me though) If I have a camera I will take a picture at some point

Until next blog................................ 
Warning: This Toyota Highlander Stops at all Fabric Shops
.•*´¨ ) ¸.•*¨) -:¦:-
(¸.•´(¸ ;.•
Carla.

PS: Please forgive any typos. I usually try to proof but something always tends to slip by me.

2 comments:

The Sparrows End said...

Hi I saw your comment on shabby blog about blog envy and I thought I would stop by and say hello I am a new blogger as well .
I love your blog the pictures are great !
Well good luck blogging and I will be following you now :)
Rebecca
www.Thesparrowsend.blogspot.com

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